A vision of the future…

So far this season three of the race teams have drastically changed their cockpit displays by including the revolutionary Garmin G3X 'glass cockpit'.

The G3X replaces the traditional gauges used in the raceplane and other aircraft. It gives the pilots the data they need on one screen so they can focus 100% on their racing. The G3X can also collect all the data necessary for the team analyst to help the pilot improve his race line.

Three teams have installed the G3X so far in their raceplanes. Team Goulian and Team Garmin arrived in Abu Dhabi with their new displays. And Hannes Arch had his put in place ready for the race in Spielberg.

"It's really cleaned up the panel of the raceplane," said Pat Philips, Team Garmin's technician. "It collects all the data needed to analyse the flight, and for racing you can set fuel flow to make sure you're running at the engine optimum," he added. "You can also fabricate your own gauges, so if there is a parameter you want to check, you can set your gauge with its own scale and display."

Michael Goulian and his team are also using the G3X to help evaluate flights. "It's reliable and the data is perfect for post flight analysis. As it's all in one system it makes so much sense," said Pablo Branco of Team Goulian.

It's a long process to install the G3X. "It took three weeks for everything to be ready," explained Nigel Dickinson, Hannes Arch's technician. "But it was worth it. It's the next step in avionics and it is helping with everything."

The G3X has remote-monitored components, such as the radio and transponder, essential equipment for flying. As they are remote monitored, then can be placed anywhere in the raceplane. "We can alter the CofG [Centre of Gravity] to fit perfectly for Hannes' flying style, and we can move them so the raceplane is balanced," said Dickinson. "It also really helps for Hannes when he's racing because everything is on one screen so he can absorb all the relevant data he needs in an instant. I can see all the other teams implementing this, they'd be silly not to," he added.

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